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Aug 06, 2010

Rachel Alexandra puts in work for Personal Ensign


Saratoga Springs, NY (Sports Network) - A little less than four weeks before she returns to the races, 2009 Horse of the Year Rachel Alexandra had a five- furlong workout Monday morning. The four-year-old filly will make her next start in the 1 1/4-mile Personal Ensign at Saratoga on August 29.

With jockey Shaun Bridgmohan riding, the champion covered the five-furlongs in 1:02.45 on Saratoga's Oklahoma training track.

"I thought she looked really good," said trainer Steve Asmussen. "Shaun did a good job with her. She obviously was very strong away from the pole, but she looked beautiful. This morning was a little warmer than it has been the past two days. I think the cooler weather this week has had her energy level very high, and we did a little more with her first work back today than we normally do off a race [because] of how she'd been galloping the past few days."

Rachel Alexandra will have workouts the next three Monday mornings leading up to the Personal Ensign, which will be her initial attempt at 1 1/4-miles. Her previous longest race was last year's 1 3/16-miles Preakness, which she won.

"She's always been very impressive; something that everybody has noted on is how she gallops out after a race," noted Asmussen. "She shows that in her training. It is going to be her first time at 1 1/4-miles running, and it isn't galloping out."

Owned by Stonestreet Stable and Harold McCormick, Rachel is no stranger to winning at Saratoga. As a three-year-old she won the Woodward versus older males. Her regular jockey is two-time Kentucky Derby winner Calvin Borel.

"I feel very comfortable, with her being here and having had the success she had last year," added Asmussen. "Right now, you try to get her work schedule where it is and hope that Mother Nature allows you to do that."

She won the $400,000 Lady's Secret Stakes at Monmouth Park in her most recent start. The champion filly has won two of four races in 2010, including her last two, for $498,376.

Rachel has won 13 of 18 career starts for $3,446,730.

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